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OUR TEAM

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Sally Santellano

Principal

ssantellano@johndls.org

Principal Santellano has been St. John de la Salle's school leader for seven years. She attended The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. where she studied Social Work & Religion. Her passion for education began when she was a volunteer in Kingston, Jamaica through the Passionist Volunteers International Program. Through this program she spent a year supporting families in the Kingston community. There she witnessed the transformative power of education and committed herself to the profession of teaching. Upon returning from Jamaica, she worked to earn her Master's in Education from Valparaiso University. She joined the St. John de la Salle community after holding various teaching and leadership positions for 13 years in the Diocese of Gary (Indiana). In 2005, Mrs. Santellano was honored with the Teacher of Excellence Award in East Chicago and in 2017 she was chosen as a Most Inspiring Teacher (Hammond). In 2018, she was awarded the Grace Under Pressure award in the Archdiocese of Chicago and in 2022 she received the Gretchen A. Ludwig Award for Principal Excellence from the Big Shoulders Fund. When she is not at school, Principal Santellano likes to play basketball, swim, sing and spend quality time with her loving husband and four kids.

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Damani McClellan

Assistant Principal

dmcclellan@johndls.org

Mr. McClellan is a graduate of Roosevelt University, with a B.A. in Psychology and minor in Biology as well as holding a Master's Degree in Education from Saint Xavier University. Before entering the education field, he worked in clinical research, examining chronic illnesses. Mr. McClellan joined St. John de la Salle in 2019 after teaching 2nd grade in the south suburbs. In 2021, he was awarded a Hero of the School award from the Archdiocese of Chicago. Mr. McClellan became our full-time Assistant Principal in 2022. In February 2024, Mr. McClellan was awarded the Thea Bowman Educational Leadership Award from the Archdiocese of Chicago. Mr. McClellan provides consultation nationally on the topic of Social Emotional Learning (SEL) with Big Shoulders Fund and created an SEL curriculum that we use daily at SJDLS (along with 70 other local schools). In his free time, Mr. McClellan likes to work out, travel, listen to music, and go camping. 

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Janice Wills

Administrative Assistant

Jwills@johndls.org

Mrs. Janice Wills has worked for the Archdiocese of Chicago for 26 years in a variety roles including Administrative Assistant, Food Service and Before and After Care Coordinator. Mrs. Wills is happily married to Mr. Richard Wills, former Maintenance Supervisor here at SJDLS. Mrs. Wills is proud that 5 of her 6 children attended both Catholic Grammar and High School. She has 15 beautiful grandbabies and two great-grandchildren! She loves coming to work every day with the St. John students and families. 

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Robin Redmond

Preschool Instructor

 rredmond@johndls.org

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India Maynor

Preschool Instructor

imaynor@johndls.org

Mrs. India Maynor is our pre-K teacher. Teaching is her passion, and she looks forward to collaborating with both you and your child. This year promises fun and lots of learning. Married with four daughters, ages 14, 12, 5, and 3, Mrs. Maynor spends most of her free time with her family. With 20 years of experience in primary education, she loves teaching pre-K students because she believes a strong foundation encourages a successful educational journey!

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Chanel Johnson

Preschool Aide

 cjohnson@johndls.org

Ms. Chanel Johnson is Chicago native having 13 years of corporate work experience until motherhood. Having experienced a love like no other, she realized that her passion was caring for infants and children. The past 5 years of being a childcare provider has enriched her love even greater for early childhood education. She is extremely excited to start this journey as a preK aide with SJDLS.

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Tocarra Taylor

Kindergarten

 ttaylor@johndls.org

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Constance Hudson

Kindergarten aide, After Care Coordinator

chudson@johndls.org 

Mrs. Hudson has worked at St. John de la Salle for over 11 years in a variety of roles: Pre-K and Kindergarten Aide, After School Care Coordinator, Substitute Teacher, Before School coordinator, as well as coordinating the Mother-Son and the Father-Daughter dances in the spring! Before her time here, she worked throughout the Archdiocese teaching and assisting. Ms. Hudson can be found all over St. John assisting wherever needed. When asked what she loves most about St. John de la Salle, Mrs. Hudson replied, "Kids- I love all kids!" In her life outside of SJDLS, Mrs. Hudson has 4 grown children and 8 grandchildren.

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Keyaria Whitney

1st Grade Instructional Assistant

and After Care Coordinator

kwhitney@johndls.org

Ms. Whitney has been the Preschool aide at SJDLS for 6 years. She has also been the After-Care supervisor, substitute teacher, and goes wherever she is needed! Ms. Whitney is the Cheerleading Coach. In her spare time, Ms. Whitney likes to do hair, and volunteers her time to help the community. Ms. Whitney is an aunt to many nieces and nephews who she loves to spend time with. She enjoys playing games and working with young people.

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Lauren Duffy

1st Grade

Lduffy@johndls.org

I received my B.S. degree in Education at the University of Alabama. I am currently working on my Masters at Saint Xavier University with an endorsement in Elementary Education. Before coming to SJDL, I was working as a substitute teacher for Summit Hill district 161. I love spending time with my three younger brothers and anything Disney. I am so excited to be teaching at SJDLS!

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Elliott Hardy

2nd Grade

Ehardy@johndls.org

Elliott Hardy, is a proud graduate of Marist High School, Chicago, IL and went on to receive my Bachelor of Science Degree from Southern Illinois University- Carbondale, IL. Upon graduation from S. I.U.C. I remained in Carbondale and worked as a Preschool Teacher where I developed lasting relationships with parents and children alike. Previously, I was the kindergarten teacher at Pope John Paul II Catholic School in Chicago, Illinois.  I have been in the educational field for over 6 years now. Working in Social Services most recently has afforded Mr. Hardy, the opportunity to work in areas related to Crisis Intervention, Group Therapy and Curriculum development. I have been in the social work field for over 17 years. Mr. Hardy also possesses a Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership from Lewis University and Master of Science in Education, with emphasis on Curriculum and Instruction from Concordia University- Portland. Mr. Hardy is currently working on his Master’s in Education from National Louis University

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Madison Carr

3rd Grade

mcarr@johndls.org

Ms. Maddie Carr is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame where she earned her B.A. in Psychology and minor in Education, Schooling, & Society. She then went on to earn her Masters of Education through Notre Dame’s Alliance for Catholic Education while teaching 2nd and 3rd Grade at a Catholic School in Los Angeles, CA. Though originally from the Washington D.C. area, Ms. Carr is excited to be living in Chicago and joining the SJDLS community where she feels blessed to be continuing her lifelong dream of teaching children. She is grateful to have the opportunity to work closely with families to guide the intellectual and spiritual growth of all of her students towards achieving their goals and reaching their fullest potential.

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Tanisha Randolph

4th Grade

trandolph@johndls.org

Tanisha Randolph was born and raised in the city of Chicago. She has a B.A. from Chicago State University and has taught for both public and private institutions for 20 years Favorite educational quote:
“Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think.” -Albert Einstein

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Sister Maria Okeke

4th-8th Religion 

mokeke@johndls.org

Sister Maria Ukamaka Okeke is a Catholic education teacher and administrator with 18 years of experience as a principal in Catholic primary and secondary schools. She belongs to the religious institute of the Immaculate Heart of Maria Mother of Christ (IHM). Currently, she is getting her Ph.D. in Educational leadership and Administration with a concentration in K-12 at DePaul University Chicago.

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Kelley Berry

5th-8th English and Language Arts

kberry@johndls.org

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Erica Davis

5th-8th Social Studies and Science

edavis@johndls.org

 Ms. Erica Davis is a Chicago native who loves God and serving his people. She has worked in Education for over 12 years. Erica previously taught 1st grade at St. John and started the first ever SJDLS Drumline! Outside of her passion for Education, her hobbies include music, sports, and shopping. Erica is looking forward to blessing St. John with her gifts.

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Adje Accoh

5th-8th Math

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Robin Jenkins

STEM

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Señora Ortega

Spanish

Senora spends the summer working with children in need in her native Ecuador. Senora is working to teach all of our students Spanish in grades PK-8, as well as starting an after-school Spanish Club.

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Mr. McCottrell

Physical Education Teacher

PEmccottrell@johndls.org

I was born in Bellville, Illinois(Just outside of East St. Louis, IL). Growing up I loved sports and played in the marching band. I was a big kid so the tuba fit me perfectly. At the age of 15 I went to the Million Man March in D.C. on October 16th 1995 hosted by the great Louis Farrakhan. It was one of many defining moments in my life. After highschool, I accepted a full football scholarship from Eastern Illinois University and played alongside Tony Romo (Soon to be Dallas Cowboys Quarterback). We won the Conference Championship and I received my letterman jacket and a NCAA Conference Championship Ring. Soon, I ran away to Chicago with my college sweetheart, got married, and started a wonderful family that I am so proud of. Today, I am part of a bigger family in St. John and I love it.

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Nadia Simmons

Art

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Deb Lowry

Instructional Aide

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